Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah directed the Department of Local Government on Friday to draw up a detailed plan to clear the 555 nullah in Karachi under the same rehabilitation model adopted for cleaning Mehmoodabad nullah, Gujjar nullah and other natural rainwater channels.
Of the nullah to be cleared, 41 are under the jurisdiction of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) and 514 under municipal municipal enterprises (DMC).
Chairing the Provincial Coordination and Implementation Committee meeting, Murad said, “The model adopted to clear Mehmoodabad and Gujjar nullahs is a complete package, in which not only encroachment along the nullahs has been removed, but affected people are also compensated and roads are built in along the embankment of the rainwater channel. “
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He stressed that the same model needs to be applied to clearing the KMC and DMC ‘nullah so that the urban flood problem can be resolved for good.
In addition, the meeting was informed that the anti-encroachment movement along Mehmoodabad nullah began on January 4, 2021 and encroachment along 7.5 kilometers on both sides of the nullah had been cleared. A total of 59 checks had to be given to the affected people as compensation and of those, 49 have been distributed, meeting participants were further informed.
Explaining the meeting, Karachi commissioner Naveed Ahmed Shaikh said of the 514 nullah under the DMC, the cleanup of 298 had started.
According to him, cleaning the Nullah DMC would cost around Rs430 million and from KMC’s resources, the DMC would utilize Rs119 million for this purpose.
“We need another Rs316 million,” he said.
At that time, CM directed the Regional Government Minister Sindh Syed Nasir Hussain Shah to apply for a disbursement of funds.
Meanwhile, NED University of Engineering and Technology, Dr Sarosh Lodhi informed at the meeting that a detailed survey report on the Manzoor Colony nullah and its distributors, Gujjar nullah and its distributors as well as the Orangi nullah has been submitted and another report on the 25 nullah is being prepared.
He said the Hub’s sewer had 37 intercept structures and suggested that its width be expanded from the existing 10 feet to 25 feet to meet the expected flow.
Likewise, he said, the Essa Nagri drainage has 68 tapping structures and it has also been proposed to widen the beds. He added that because the Madina Colony drain has 103 wiretaps, he not only proposed widening the beds, but also maintaining them.
The VC further recommends the Moach Goth channel plating, which has 76 wiretap buildings, the Haroonabad channel, which has 26 wiretaps, and the Pitcher nullah, which has 30 wiretaps.
“Covering this nullah will solve the problem of hydraulic access,” he said.
Dr Lodhi, recalling that Saadi City was inundated during heavy rains last year when rainwater overflowed on the Super Highway, suggested building a nullah in the area to dump excess water from Saadi City into the Lyari River.
At that time, CM directed the Department of Local Government to draw up a detailed plan for restructuring the nullahs, as suggested by Dr. Lodhi.
In addition, from the meeting it was informed that a survey revealed that 3,957 buildings had been moved along Gujjar nullah, which stretches for 12.6 kilometers.
The elimination of soft encroachment along the nullah was carried out between February 8, 2021 and February 18, 2021, and efforts to remove the remaining structures have been carried out since February 19, the meeting said.
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Of the 3,957 checks that will be distributed to people affected by the drive, 3,587 have been cashed and the remainder also given away.
Regarding the Orangi nullah, it was informed from the meeting that 1,103 had been identified for displacement along the embankment in the West District which was up to six kilometers long.
While soft encroachment has been cleared up, another relocation of buildings began this month. There are 193 buildings along the 1.6 km length of the nullah in the Keamari district.
Under the resettlement support initiative, compensation checks are distributed among affected people, the meeting said.